「親友におせっかいしたい!」 (Shin`yuu ni Osekkai Shitai!)
“I Want to Meddle in My Friend`s Business!”
Uzaki-chan wa Asobitai! adds another character to its roster with Sakurai’s surprise friend Itsuhito. But when he also makes it his ultimate goal to hook Sakurai up with Uzaki, will it cause him to come at odds with Ami, who also shares her own vested interest in shipping Sakura and Uzaki together from the sidelines? Or will Uzaki bring in some last-minute conflict between her and Sakurai with his disinterest in Choco-Mint?
It’s a relief that Itsuhito wasn’t the kind of best friend character that was going to try to throw Sakurai under the bus or create a love triangle out of nowhere. In fact, he was quite an amusing addition to the show as his closest friend who is quickly fed up with his friend’s gloomy loner ways. That is until he sees him interacting with Uzaki, knowing that he’s had a pretty lackluster private life up until she started playing with him.
Given that it’s finally something that would give Sakurai more depth than just coasting by college and letting his college glory days go to waste, Itsuhito’s ultimate goal is fun to see as it shows him wanting to hook the couple up for the sake of wanting Sakurai to come out of his shell more.
At the same time, it is unique because it conflicts with Ami’s methodology of shipping the two by leaving them alone, undisturbed, and unperturbed. She’s worried that his interference could stifle their relationship even though his intentions are to be Sakurai’s wingman. They both have a shared goal of elevating the relationship, but with Ami and her dad being essentially the same character, it is nice to see that there is a clearer distinction between Itsuhito and Ami’s ways of shipping Sakurai and Uzaki.
In unrelated news, the last half of the episode was pretty hilarious because it’s one of the few instances when Sakurai shakes Uzaki to her core. In this instance, it’s his flippant comment that Choco-Mint desserts kinda taste like toothpaste. But instead of shaking it off or channeling her energy towards mocking Sakurai’s disposition, she is incensed and fuming over the discrimination that comes from those who feel judged for liking Choco-Mint sweets.
It was hilarious to see how offended she got while she was defending the honor of the Choco-Mint. Even funnier was the reaction that the world had to her monologue as she received a slow clap and a standing ovation from the entire university for having stood up for one of her favorite flavors. There was also a cute moment with the both of them noticing the indirect kiss from enjoying the Choco-Mint candies together, but it was a fresh change of pace to see Uzaki have a strong enough opinion on a subject that she would take a break from trying to give Sakurai her undivided attention to fight him on why some in society look down upon the Choco-Mint.